Every other week, the editors of American Theatre curate a free-ranging discussion about the lively arts in our Offscript podcast.
We took a break because podcast producer, associate editor Diep Tran, was on vacation. But we’re back in time for the summer! This week’s guest is director Ed Sylvanus Iskandar, whose immersive production of Shakespeare’s The Taming of the Shrew with an all-male cast is currently running at Shakespeare Theatre Company. Iskandar talks the play’s misogyny and how an all-male cast paradoxically helps with that, plus how he managed to mix in some tunes by Duncan Sheik.
Speaking of Shakespeare, the editors discuss what they’re looking forward to this summer: outdoor Shakespeare, new plays, and Broadway bounty hunters.
- Shakespeare in the Park at the Public Theater (including an all-female Taming of the Shrew)
- The Taming by Lauren Gunderson at Shakespeare and Company (a modern, feminist adaptation of Shrew)
- This year’s Bay Area Playwrights Festival lineup
- The political drama American Daughter by Wendy Wasserstein at Williamstown Theatre Festival
- Joe Iconis’s new musical, Broadway Bounty Hunter, at Barrington Stage Company
- The summer season of American Players Theater
- The summer season of new plays Creede Repertory Theatre
- The predominantly female Contemporary Theatre Festival summer season
- Money comedy Windfall by Scooter Pietsch, directed by Jason Alexander, at Arkansas Repertory Theatre
- Shakespeare’s Much Ado About Nothing, directed by Jackson Gay, at California Shakespeare Theater
- Hadestown, Anaïs Mitchell’s folk musical about Orpheus and Eurydice, currently playing through July 3 at New York Theatre Workshop. If you’re not in NYC, you can buy or stream the concept album for the show (Diep’s been listening to it on repeat, you should too).
- “Broadway May Not Be So White, but Is It Woman Enough?” wonder Laura Collins-Hughes and Alexis Soloski in the New York Times. The conversation between the two critics on female representation on Broadway is a must-read.
- The cast album for Elizabeth Swados’ subversive, youth-filled musical Runaways is just about the only one of the late composer’s works that’s commercially available, so Rob has been YouTube-hunting for more Swados snippets. The search should begin and end, though, with 1978’s “Ring of Keys” moment, when the young, diverse, rangy Runaways cast gave an indelible Tony Awards performance. And if you’re in NYC, check out New York City Center‘s concert performance of the musical, July 6-9 (Rob wrote the program notes).
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